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Prepping for Your Next Eye Appointment Whether you’re visiting our office for the first time or you’ve been a patient for years, you can do a little homework to be better prepared for your next appointment. To identify some items you should discuss during your next visit, consider the following:

What daily activities impact your eyes? For instance, do you spend lots of time in front of a computer screen or do you find yourself mostly outdoors? Those who frequently use digital devices might experience eye strain while those who work outside are more susceptible to eye sunburns or cancer caused by UV light. If you tell us about the conditions that impact your vision, such as the examples listed here, we can better address your personal eye health.

Have you noticed a change in your eye sight? Even if you answered “no,” your vision can gradually decline without your knowledge. As you age, the sharpness of your visual acuity declines. By the time you reach 40 years old, it’s common to experie…
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Traumatic Brain Injuries & Vision It’s not uncommon for someone who experiences a traumatic brain injury (TBI) to develop visual problems. A TBI can be caused by a bump, blow, or jolt to the head or a penetrating head injury that disrupts the normal function of the brain. TBIs can range in severity from mild to severe—in fact, the CDC says that most TBIs that occur in the United States are mild and more commonly known as concussions.  Each year, TBIs contribute to a substantial number of disability cases. A short- or long-term loss in vision quality is just one of the many symptoms an individual may experience. A TBI can also impact attention and memory, coordination and balance, hearing, perception, and touch. Personality changes, aggressive behavior, poor impulse control, and mood disorders, such as depression and anxiety, can also appear after a TBI.    In addition to cognitive, physical, or other sensory impairments, here are some common visual problems that can result from a bra…
The Skinny on Eye Color Genes You may have learned in biology class that your eye color is determined by the genes you inherited. (Genes are essentially “sets of recipes” that are provided in our DNA.) Along with that, you were probably taught about dominant and recessive genes. For eyes, the dominant gene for the color brown always won over the recessive gene for blue eyes. Unfortunately, that information isn’t right. In the past decade, scientists have discovered the influence of genes on eye color is a little more complicated.

A number of different factors define a person’s eye color, the most important of which is eight different color-related genes. The genes control how much melanin, or color pigment, exists in the iris of your eyes. For instance, a gene called OCA2 controls almost 75 percent of the blue-brown color spectrum. Other genes can overrule OCA2, but that rarely happens. This can explain why green eyes are a rarity throughout the world.
Presbyopia is a Part of Getting Older As we age, our bodies change due to natural wear and tear. Our skin starts to wrinkle and sag, muscles begin to shrink and lose mass, and hair becomes grayer. Your visual acuity also begins to decline, and this typically happens after you reach the age of 40. This common condition is called presbyopia, which means “old eyes” in Latin.   

Because it’s an age-related change and not a disease, presbyopia can’t be prevented. However, living a healthy lifestyle that includes exercise and a well-balanced diet can help slow the process. 

What causes presbyopia? The lenses of our eyes lose their flexibility, causing them to become weaker over time. This makes it difficult to focus on close objects. While the condition may seem to occur suddenly, it actually takes a few years for your lenses to become weak.  

Common symptoms. If you hold reading materials at arm’s length, you might have presbyopia. Additional signs include blurred vision when you’re reading at…
Are You Playing it Safe? Spring is finally here, and more people are getting outdoors to participate in sports and recreation.  

According to the American Academy of Ophthalmology, tens of thousands of sports and recreation-related eye injuries occur every year. This ranges from scratches on the surface of the eye to blinding injuries. Because your regular eyewear doesn’t offer protection from such incidents, you need protective eyewear that’s appropriate for your level of activity. By doing this, you can prevent up to 90 percent of serious eye injuries.

According to www.geteyesmart.org, the following will help protect your and your family’s vision during sports and outdoor recreation activities. 
Youth that play sports should wear eye protection such as polycarbonate lenses or masks that meet the requirements of the American Society of Testing Materials, even if the league doesn’t require it. People who wear contacts or glasses should also wear protective eyewear because contacts offer no…
Not All Sunglasses Are The Same
Who doesn’t love the outdoors on a gorgeous sun-filled day? If you spend a great deal of time outside, you’re likely at a higher risk for eye damage caused by UV rays. The good news is with the right eye protection, you can reduce your exposure to solar radiation so that it’s not an issue. 

Most people are aware that getting too much sun is bad for your skin, but what they usually don’t know the same principle applies to their eyes. If your eyes are exposed to excessive amounts of UV radiation over a short period of time, you’re likely to experience a condition called photokeratitis, which in essence is an eye sunburn. Symptoms can include redness, a gritty sensation, extreme sensitivity to light, and excessive tearing. Photokeratitis is usually temporary and rarely causes permanent damage. 

Serious conditions, such as cataracts or retina damage, are often caused by long-term exposure to UV radiation.

To protect your eyes, you need sunglasses, and not just …
When Does Your Baby Need a Vision Appointment? If you’ve welcomed a little one into your life, one of the greatest moments you’ll cherish is looking into their eyes for the first time. Not every baby makes eye contact, but there’s good reason for that. Much like walking or talking, the visual system of an infant takes some time to develop—in fact, in the first weeks after birth they don’t see much detail and only see in black and white plus shades of gray. While it takes several months for your child’s vision to develop, there are some steps you can take to ensure they have proper vision. 

Once your baby is born, your doctor will quickly examine her eyes to rule out any serious problems. While such problems are rare, it’s vital to detect any issues right away in order to treat and minimize their impact on your child’s visual development. 

During your child’s first few months, she will start to focus on objects that are 8 to 10 inches away from her face, which is generally the distance at…